Once you have already gained some experience with freestyle riding on your BMX bike, it would be natural to start looking out for some new BMX shoes that would be best suitable for riding. If you are still getting acquainted with what type of shoe freestyle cyclists wear – they are pure skating shoes.
That’s right, there aren’t any special shoes created for riding a BMX bike, but skating shoes are pretty comfortable and trendy, and that’s why freestylers wear them the most. We think the best pair of BMX shoes are Vans Old Skool, classic stylish unisex sneakers that look good on any freestyler.
Let’s find out which are the best shoes suitable for BMX riding.
The Top 5 in a Glance
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Runner Up 2
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Best Overall: Vans Old Skool
The Vans Old Skool are classics in the shoe business and one of my personal favorites in terms of appearance.
This is a great stylish unisex shoe that, since its release, has always been at the top of the trends. It is quite simple but a pretty good looking sneaker at the same time.
Since this shoe is referred to as a classic, there is a vast variety of colors and combinations to choose from, so they can easily be adjusted to anyone’s clothing preferences.
There are variations of the shoes made of different materials, with the most common of all being a combination of suede and canvas, with a rubber sole.
The mixture of the fabrics on the shoe’s upper part provides a good deal of breathability to your feet. The materials have decent durability, offering a pretty good quality for their price.
The Vans Old Skool are a low-top shoe that is very flexible and comfortable to wear, allowing free movement of your foot in any direction, and at the same time giving plenty of stability with their solid sole.
The rubber outsoles have a waffle tread pattern that provides superb grip not only to the surface of the skateboards but also to the BMX pedals.
We like to think that the Vans Old Skool is one of the best shoes for BMX because they offer a mix of great appearance, high durability, lightweight, and affordability.
Runner Up: DC Trase TX
The DC Trase TX are also very lovely simple looking shoes, very similar in terms of characteristics to the Vans above. They have a very slim casual look that is easy to match with any clothing.
These unisex shoes have a couple of different color variations to choose from.
Their base is made of high-profile textile with a mesh lining on the inside, padded collars, and a rubber outsole.
The thin fabrics make them light and perfect for the hot days of the summer. They will keep your feet as dry as possible.
Overall they are low-top shoes, with good flexibility. Their stability is not one of their best qualities, but the lightweight of these shoes provides excellent comfort and a good feeling on the pedals.
The abrasion-resistant sticky rubber outsole provides a healthy grip on the pedals, keeping your feet in place effortlessly during your ride. Adding to the stability and comfort are the padded collars.
Another great thing about this shoe is that it is a relatively cheap one for the skating standards, so it is a perfect choice if you are looking for something new to rock on the BMX during the summer.
They are a top choice for BMX shoes because of their overall lightness, appearance, and comfort. Moreover, they are a very affordable pair of kicks, making them one of the best BMX shoes.
Runner Up 2: DC Pure Action
The DC Pure Action is a classic low-top skating shoe with a wide base. This is happy to be one trendy sneaker amongst the skating and freestyle cycling spheres.
They have a nice variety of color options to choose from. The different variations are made of different materials – some are from leather, some – from nubuck. All of the options have mesh lining and rubber soles.
The tongue and collar are padded with foam, which makes these shoes very comfortable, giving your feet some extra stability. The mesh lining will help keep your feet from getting sweaty.
The abrasion-resistant sticky rubber outsoles of the DC Pure Action can perfectly stick to the pedals and help you have a nice firm stand while riding your BMX.
What’s more is that these kicks have great arch support from their inner soles, ensuring a good level of comfort for your feet.
Another great thing about those sneakers, and particularly the leather ones, is that they are quite easy to clean and maintain. And as all of us riders know, we always end up getting our shoes dirty.
The main reasons that the DC Pure Action are one of the top choices for a good BMX shoe are that they are a great mixture of appearance, quality, and comfort and thus fulfill most of the needs of a large chunk of the BMX riders.
Popular Choice: DC Court Graffik
The DC Court Graffik is one funky choice on our list. They also are extremely popular with BMX riders. They are low-top sneakers, available in a few different colors.
The different models feature leather or nubuck upper materials, with some small textile elements.
As well as the previous model on our list, the DC Court Graffik also features a padded foam tongue and padded collars with mesh lining.
These keep your feet well stabilized and dry at the same time. What’s more, is that you may find these sneakers extremely comfortable because of their superb cushioning.
However, what’s different with this model is that it has a few ventilation holes on the side, providing some extra breathability to the feet. With this, they are a combination of both durability and lightness, suitable even for the hottest summer days.
Even though they look like heavy sneakers, the DC Court Graffik are actually one pretty light pair of sneakers because of the materials used in their making.
With these, you can be pretty sure that your feet will be flexible, and you have complete control over your pedals.
Best Style: Osiris Men’s Protocol
The Protocol by Osiris is another excellent choice of low-top BMX shoe. They come with a high variety of different colors and styles to choose from.
This way, you can keep it classic and get a casual one-color plain skating shoe, or you can prefer a funkier style with some different color combinations.
All of the materials used for the Osiris Protocol are synthetic – leather and suede are the main options amongst the different variations.
They all have an abrasion-resistant rubber sole for an excellent grip over your pedals and have some reinforced areas for extra durability.
You can count on some superb comfort and support provided by many cushions and pads inside their collars and tongue.
What’s great about the Osiris Protocol is that this pair is a pretty light one, providing great breathability, keeping your feet dry and fresh. Thus, it is very suitable for cycling during hot days.
We would recommend this pair mainly due to its excellent choice of color variations, the outstanding level of comfort that they provide, and because they are a pretty budget-friendly model. The Protocol by Osiris are a great option for everyday cyclists.
The Swivel are one of our top choices for the best BMX shoes by Etnies. They are low-top skating sneakers that can be found in a couple of different color variations.
These shoes are inspired by some classic sneakers and are mostly built of suede, with some leather parts.
This pair is quite a notable one due to the characteristics of its sole. The outsoles are naturally made of rubber, providing remarkable control while pedaling. What’s different is that it has a special Foam Lite 1 insole, making these shoes extremely comfortable.
Adding to this is the midsole egg-crate construction, which also provides excellent durability to the soles of these sneakers.
Another thing contributing significantly to the comfort of these kicks is the multiple padding on the inside of the shoe. The cushioning not only provides comfort but high stability as well.
It is safe to say that the DC Swivel is one extremely durable pair due to the high quality of its construction. With this point, plus the level of comfort they provide, they are one of our top choices for a pair of high-profile BMX shoes.
Nike SB Air Jordan 1 “Craig Stecyk”
An exceptional sneaker making its way on our list of the best BMX shoes is the special edition of the Nike Air Jordan 1 – the SB Craig Stecyk kicks. This is a great skateboarding reproduction of the classic basketball shoes by Jordan.
This is the only high-top option on our list – with this pair you can feel the true support over your ankles.
Since they are a unique edition shoe, they come in one color – black and black-silver, with white rubber soles, and made from leather.
Besides the rubber outsoles, the Air Jordan 1 Craig Stecyk has the Air midsole technology by Nike, giving them a very comfortable fit.
What is pretty unique about these sneakers is their appearance, purely being a work of art. Adding to that is the comfort and stability that they provide during your ride.
They are surely above the average price for a BMX shoe, but nevertheless, you will undoubtedly be turning heads while riding with these.
How to Choose the Best BMX Shoes ( Buying Guide )
The comfort, looks, and durability are most important to consider when choosing the perfect shoes for riding your BMX bike.
You should choose what you want to rely on most, as there are very few shoes that offer high indexes on all three points and if there are such products – they will be quite expensive.
So you will most likely end up sacrificing one of those key specifics.
Looks and Style
The looks of your BMX bike shoes are completely up to you, as there are plenty of different styles and color variations to choose from. You will quickly pick out a pair that will best suit your appearance.
Read more: Can You Wear Running Shoes for Cycling?
Comfort and Fit
You should know that skating shoes are not very keen on providing much comfort because of their flat soles.
Anyone who has the habit of wearing such, or at least has had a pair in their life, is acquainted with how uncomfortable long walks can be with these shoes.
However, the flat bottoms won’t be that much uncomfortable while cycling.
Moreover, they will give you a pretty fair amount of stability while riding your BMX.
We always recommend bikers buy the same size BMX shoes as their standard shoe size in terms of size.
Keep in mind that trying shoes on before you buy to ensure the fit and overall comfort is as good as possible is your safest bet.
Grip and Stability
A key characteristic of what makes a good BMX shoe is the grip that the soles provide. You surely wouldn’t want to slip on your pedals while cycling.
Thus, it is of high importance to look for good rubber soles that will nicely stick on your pedals, allowing you to keep your focus only on your cycling.
Durability is naturally key to picking out a good pair, as it will provide you with a longer-lasting investment.
The best you can do regarding that is to rely on one of the leading brands which have been in the business for a long time, as they can provide you with the best possible quality.
Types of BMX shoes
Although all shoes suitable for the BMX are based on having a flat sole, there are a few different variations that can be distinguished according to the height of the sneaker to the ankle.
Thus, BMX kicks can be divided into three types – low-tops, mid-tops, and high-tops.
As you might imagine, the low-tops are pretty much ordinary shoes, with a height that reaches below your ankle, and are the most commonly worn type of all three.
The mid-tops reach the height of the ankle and provide some protection against twisting.
The high-tops go above your ankle and provide the most protection to your feet.
It is hard to say which one provides the most comfort, as it is a matter of personal preference.
Our best advice is to try out the different types before approaching to buy one, so you can find out which one best suits your needs of comfort and looks good on your feet.
Read more: The Science of Sneakers: High-Tops vs. Low-Tops
Best BMX shoes brands
If you are not yet acquainted with the best brands in the business of BMX and skating shoes, we will provide you with some of the top brands that have been well known for a long time. They have been producing the best shoes in these spheres.
Brands like Vans, Etnies, DC, and Lotek are well known for producing some of the best shoes in the skating business.
They are equally popular amongst the BMX riders as well.
Nike and Adidas, as two of the most prolific brands for sports goods, are also favored in the BMX business with their skateboarding lines.
Of course, manufacturers like Shimano produce some of the best cycling shoes, which are still preferred by a few freestyle cyclists.